Saturday, January 31, 2015

Mandy, You're a Fine Girl - What a Good Wife You Would Be

Barry Manilow's famous song Mandy was penned and recorded by Scott English as "Brandy", which was a hit in the UK in 1971. Brandy was changed to Mandy when Manilow released it in the US to avoid confusion with the hit Brandy (You're a Fine Girl) by Looking Glass, a Rutgers University fraternity band.

Which brings me on to an article in the magazine for Rutgers University Alumni - Spring 2009, which carried an article about this song and the band itself, which listed amongst many things, where the former band members are today:
  • Larry Gonsky RC'70 (keyboards) teaches music in the Morristown school district; 
  • Jeff Grob CC'85 (drums) after playing with the hard-rock band Starz, returned to school and earned his landscape architecture degree. He works for Stantec, which contributed to the redesign of Route 18. He still plays locally with Richie Ranno's All Stars; 
  • Elliot Lurie RC'70 (lead guitar) manages actors and recording artists, including Corbin Bleu of High School Musical fame, in Los Angeles. He worked as an independent music film supervisor and executive vice president of music at 20th Century Fox; 
  • Pieter Sweval RC'70 (bass) played with Starz and the disco band Skatt Bros before dying of AIDS in 192. 
The band still receives royalty checks for use of the song Brandy. Sweval's family donates his share to AIDS research.

Incidentally, Barry Manilow had five albums on the best-seller charts simultaneously (in 1978), a feat a feat equalled only by Herb Alpert, The Beatles, Frank Sinatra, Michael Jackson, Bruce Springsteen, and Johnny Mathis.

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